The Prestat Jewel Box (please respect it and call it by its full name) comes in three sizes. I had long lusted after the PJB, stacked in the food hall of Liberty, enticed by its history (Prestat was the inspiration for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!). However, I only tried the chocolates for the first time a few years ago, when I received it as a gift from my old editor, along with a bunch of flowers from Bloom and Wild.
Once I opened the box, embossed with gold lettering, and peeled back the layers of deep-purple tissue, I was hooked. Well, no, I was in love. The selling point (amongst others) of the PJB is that it revels in its campness. Push back the abundance of tissue (there are two layers, plus two layers of a kind of protective cardboard thing, also in deep purple) and there’s a cornucopia of choice from a dark violet creme, to a fiery ginger globe, to a white banoffee truffle. All the flavours in the PBJ are good, apart from, arguably, the marzipan flavour (into every life a marzipan must fall). I’ve tried fancy chocs before, but they were never this glam. A selection box from Hotel Chocolat feels a little too cerebral (who wants chilli chocolate?), and a treat from Godiva feels too much like a gift you’d give your piano teacher at the end of term. Charbonnel et Walker Sea Salt Caramels are delicious, but I like a little variety in my sweet treats.
Adding to my Aging Starlet fantasy is the fact that you can buy it at Liberty London, thus encasing your precious Jewel Box in a fancy carrier bag. Also, did you know that like Boots, you get a 5 points for every £1 you spend at Liberty? What I’m saying is, if you buy enough Jewel Boxes there, they basically pay for themselves.
I tend to go for medium, but if my wealthy toyboy lover wanted to buy me the large, I would not say no. The medium box costs £21, which I know is expensive. I would like to say I’ve gone on to buy the PJB as a gift for friends, but I haven’t. Like all jealous lovers, I am greedy and protective of my chocolates, and if I’m spending £21 on 16 delicious bites, they’re for me to devour. I’ve probably bought one every four-to-six months for the past two years, ekeing out my spoils with a decadent, purple-clad chocolate each night. I’m not here to announce that you can buy your way out of your problems, and I’ve been vocal about the commodification of self-care, but look, if you feel like the Gremlin version of yourself, something jolly might help.
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